On May 5th, 1984, President Ronald Reagan signed Proclamation 5187 creating “National Correctional Officers Week”. Since then, the first full week in May has been marked to recognize and to honor the work of Correctional Officers and Correctional Personnel Nationwide.
In 1996, the U.S. Senate officially changed the name of the week to National Correctional Officers and Employees Week.
Correctional professionals have a difficult and dangerous assignment and their duty is an essential element of the correctional system. Corrections officers are responsible for the custodial trust and safeguard of persons that are placed into custody. It's a responsibility that comes with great pride but is also often tested. In times of enormous stress, they are constantly mindful of simple common decency and respect for others, a trait that is often taken for granted.
Pope County Sheriff Shane Jones stated, “I commend and thank all correctional officers throughout the country, but I especially want to commend those officers working at the Pope County Detention Center. You are the backbone of our facility and more often than not, you are overlooked when it comes to being recognized for your dedication and hard work. The hours are long, the work is demanding and the reward is often small.” Sheriff Jones continued, “To honor you men and women for only one week a year seems trivial, but as this week is set aside for that purpose, I want you to know how valuable you are and how grateful I am for the work that you do. Most people cannot grasp the strain placed upon a correctional officer, both mental and physical.”
“Having started my career in the detention facility, I know firsthand the stress your job can create,” Sheriff Jones said. “You must deal with situations that require maturity, physical strength, perseverance and compassion. You see individuals sometimes at the very lowest point in their lives. You see individuals who are angry, helpless and hopeless.”
In closing the sheriff stated, “These situations call for diligence to duty while recognizing the human side of the career you have chosen. Thank you. Thank you to each one of you who put on the uniform, cover your shifts and give the best of yourselves each day. Correctional Officers, I salute you.”
Sheriff Shane Jones
River Valley Now would like to take this time to thank the many men and women who work in jails, prisons and community corrections who help keep our communities safe. Although it is a difficult and stressful job, thank you for playing a vital role in the criminal justice system, you are appreciated!
The following video tribute is dedicated to correction officers across the River Valley, throughout the State of Arkansas and others across the nation. Thank you for all you do.